Four Couples Sail the York
Sailing gets in your blood, as discovered with two of four couples sailing the York River on a magnificent spring day with 10-12 mph winds. The sails were open completely to capture the adventure.
Years ago John Tropilo of Hampton VA crewed on a 38-foot sailboat in Lake Michigan. “I was nothing more than rail meat as we sailed from Port Huron to Mackinac Island. I think it took 20 hours, and we we sailed overnight. It was nothing like Chicago to Mackinac, but it was exhilarating.” His T-shirt from the race said the Port Huron run was 234 miles.
He and his wife Adrianne celebrated their 12 anniversary with a blue bottle of Risata Moscato d’Asti from Italy.
John was an able helmsman whom I quick taught to do his on tacking of the genoa.
They have fraternal twin girls, aged nine. I asked Adrianne if people ask stupid or invasive questions.
“Yes. One guy asked me if they were born on the same day. Well, yeah. Then there’s my brother, who has a twin boy and girl. Someone asked him if they were identical twins. He said, ‘No. One is a boy and the other is a girl.”
John sailed admirably and tacked around to take a long run downwind toward Yorktown. It was the first time he’d been on a sailboat since Port Huron years ago. “I definitely have to get back to this,” he said.
In the afternoon, three couples from Virginia Beach went sailing. They had never met and were from the beach by sheer coincidence.
Virginia O’Malley surprised her husband Mark Cotton with the sail, since he has long missed his 28-footer. He grabbed the wheel and never let go until I relieved him with another eager sailor. Jamie Hutto is getting out the Navy soon and wants to sail around the world. But first he’s going to do a solo motorcycle ride through Mexico.
Brisk winds kept the boat heeling and the conversation lively. It was a memorable start to Memorial Day Weekend.
Let’s Go Sail
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